September 03, 2021

Dear ABLE BC Members and Industry Colleagues,

Here’s what you’ll find inside today’s update:

  • ABLE BC Membership Renewals
  • ABLE BC’s 2021 COVID-19 Advocacy Report
  • Save the date: BC Liquor Conference on October 25, 2021
  • Proof of vaccination requirement coming September 13
  • New health measures introduced for Northern Health region
  • Mask mandate public order now available
  • go2HR Employment Resources for Province-Wide Mask Mandate
  • Reminder: Have your say on BC’s permanent paid sick leave
  • Staffing issues: share your thoughts
  • BC Hotel Association: Vancouver Island Live Industry Update Series
  • ABLE BC Member Feature: The Fox & Hounds Pub
  • ABLE BC Member Feature: A Day in the Life of Publican Marilyn Sanders
  • Webinar recording available: Lead generation and marketing tips for reopening
  • OHS Regulation amendments effective September 1
  • BC PST Rebate on Select Machinery and Equipment: Second application period opens October 1, 2021
  • LDB Wholesale Update: website now working on Chrome

Find all past COVID-19 updates here.

ABLE BC Membership Renewals

ABLE BC’s 2021 membership renewals have now been sent out to all members. If you haven’t received your renewal package or have questions about your membership, please contact Danielle Leroux (Director of Membership and Communications): danielle@ablebc.ca.

If you are not yet a member and are in a position to join, we would appreciate your support now more than ever. Sign-up for your membership online or contact Danielle for more information. Monthly payment plans available.

It goes without saying that British Columbia’s hospitality, accommodation, and tourism industries were hit first and hit hardest by the COVID-19 pandemic. By any measure, the past year-and-half has been the most difficult and complex business environment in a generation. 

While stringent and frequently changing public health orders have had devastating impacts on your businesses, we also know that months of sacrifice, hard work, pain, and inestimable financial hardship have taken an exhausting toll on you, your workers, and your families. 

We are turning a corner in the fight against COVID-19, but the hard reality is that most members are only just now beginning the long and difficult road to recovery.

Since the start of the pandemic, ABLE BC has been working hard every single day to advocate for your interests, protect your businesses, and help ensure the survival of our industry. 

In the past year, we’ve helped ensure that liquor retail was declared an “essential service,” secured permanent wholesale pricing for hospitality customers, allowed liquor retailers to sell to Special Event Permits, amended countless public health orders for your benefit, pushed for direct industry financial support, coordinated urgent and immediate policy changes to keep BC’s liquor and food primaries afloat, and more. In total, we have been directly responsible for securing nearly $200 million of direct financial support for your businesses.

Download our 2021 COVID-19 Advocacy Report to learn more about the work we’ve done on your behalf.

We have a long road of recovery ahead, but ABLE BC is not going anywhere. No matter what happens next, please know we will always be in your corner, fighting on your behalf. But to continue our work, we need your support – now more than ever.

We know many businesses have been dramatically impacted by this crisis; your association has been too. As our continued ability to advocate on your behalf and push for change depends on your membership, we would sincerely appreciate prompt payment of your membership dues.

Click here for instructions on how to pay your invoice. If you have any other questions or concerns, or require a payment plan for your business please contact Danielle Leroux (Director of Membership and Communications): danielle@ablebc.ca.

Thank you for your ongoing support!

ABLE BC’s 2021 COVID-19 Advocacy Report

Since the start of the pandemic, ABLE BC has been working hard every single day to advocate for your interests, protect your businesses, and help ensure the survival of our industry.

Our 2021 COVID-19 Advocacy Report outlines the work we’ve done on your behalf over the past 18 months. Download report.

In the months ahead, we’ll continue to have your back until our industry fully recovers. To that end, please don’t hesitate to contact ABLE BC’s Executive Director Jeff Guignard directly at jeff@ablebc.ca to discuss our efforts on your behalf. 

Read ABLE BC’s 2021 COVID-19 Advocacy Report.

Save the date: BC Liquor Conference on October 25, 2021

ABLE BC’s annual BC Liquor Conference is back for a sixth year: Monday, October 25, 2021. A portion of the tickets will be available to attend in person and the remaining will be available for virtual attendance. No matter where you are in the province – tune in and get the liquor industry data, trends, and policy updates you can’t get anywhere else.

Registration opens next week! Stay tuned for more details.

Proof of vaccination requirement coming September 13

Beginning September 13, British Columbians will be required to demonstrate a BC Vaccine Card to access certain settings and businesses.

A new order from the provincial health officer will require individuals aged 12 and older to provide proof of vaccination to access a broad range of social, recreational, and discretionary events and businesses throughout the province. 

This includes indoor ticketed sporting events, indoor and patio dining in food and liquor serving premises, fitness centres, casinos, and indoor organized events, like conferences and weddings. Find the full list of settings and businesses requiring proof of vaccination here

As of September 13, one dose of vaccine will be required for entry to these settings. By October 24, entry to these settings will require people to be fully vaccinated at least seven days after receiving both doses. 

For more information, please read ABLE BC’s update or visit the BC government website.

Are staff required to be vaccinated? 

ABLE BC has not heard anything about requiring staff to be vaccinated, though we recommend that your house policy requires vaccinations. Here’s an article we published with some tips on how to do it, and why it’s more complicated than it seems.

We will update industry as soon as possible if anything changes about staff requirements. We imagine this situation will evolve between now and the September 13 roll out.

Comment from ABLE BC

We know this issue is complex and divisive. We’re actively working with government to get clarity on rollout, education, and enforcement, as well as possible financial support for industry. ABLE BC will provide you with an update as soon as we can.

What we’re asking government

In response to your feedback, ABLE BC and our industry partners have raised the following questions and concerns to government about the proof of vaccination requirement:

  • Impact on sales revenue, costs, and industry reputation
  • Increased guest altercations
  • Increased challenges with staff recruitment and retention
  • How to manage non-vaccinated staff
  • Liability concerns and legal challenges (i.e., for refusing service to guests and from staff should operators try to mandate employee vaccinations)
  • Lack of details around BC Vaccination Program and not enough time or information to effectively implement the program by September 13

We’ve also requested:

  • Promotional and educational support
  • Enforcement and fines that are actioned
  • Onboarding and training period
  • Clear guidance on which businesses must deploy the vaccine card

If you have other questions and concerns, please contact ABLE BC’s Executive Director Jeff Guignard: jeff@ablebc.ca.

New health measures introduced for Northern Health region

Northern Health (NH) is introducing new public health orders covering the entire Northern Health region to manage COVID-19 activity.

Effective at 12:01 am Tuesday September 7, 2021:

  • Personal gatherings in your home – one additional family or 5 guests
  • Personal gatherings outside your home – maximum 50 people
  • Indoor events – have a safety plan (the organizer should have a safety plan, but is not required to submit one for approval)
  • Outside events – when more than 200 people, then have a safety plan
  • Sporting events with spectators, indoor & outdoor – have a safety plan

BC remains in Step 3 of the Restart Plan and businesses must continue to adhere to the following conditions and the public order on gatherings and events

  • Indoor events – maximum of 50 people or 50% capacity, whichever is greater
  • Outside events – maximum of 5000 people or 50% capacity, whichever is greater
  • Outdoor spectator events: 5000 people or 50% capacity
  • Indoor spectator event: 50 people or 50% capacity  

Not restricted by the Northern Health order or Restart Step 3 or PHO order:

  • All indoor fitness classes allowed, normal capacity
  • Gyms and recreation facilities, normal capacity
  • Restaurants, bars, pubs and nightclubs (except for socialization between tables or dancing)
  • Worship services or educational activities (K to 12 and post-secondary)

These measures will remain in place until Northern Health experiences lower cases and higher vaccination rates. For more information, please click here. For a list of communities included in the Northern Health region, click here.

Mask mandate public order now available

As a reminder, masks are currently mandatory in all indoor public spaces for people aged 12 and older, regardless of vaccination status. The related PHO public order is now available: download it here.

Important Conditions in the Public Order

Face coverings required in indoor public spaces:

Whether in an indoor public space or a working area (i.e., an area not accessed by the public), an operator or worker must wear a face covering:

  • When providing a personal service to a client
  • Serving a customer in a restaurant, pub, bar, or other business that prepares and sells food or drink
  • Serving customers in a retail business

Based on these conditions, staff do not have to wear a mask inside the kitchen if they are not serving customers.

Signage: operators of indoor public spaces and post-secondary institutions must post a signage at the entrance to all indoor areas covered by this order notifying that face coverings are required to be worn in accordance with this order.

Download ABLE BC’s free ‘masks are mandatory’ sign or purchase a laminated sign in our online store.

Expiry Date: The order expires at midnight on October 31, 2021.

For more information, please read the public order. If you have any other questions or concerns, please contact ABLE BC: info@ablebc.ca.

go2HR Employment Resources for Province-Wide Mask Mandate

go2HR has free resources to support tourism and hospitality businesses with the announcement of the BC mask mandate:

ABLE BC also has COVID-19 signage available for free PDF download and purchase in our online store.

REMINDER: Have your say on BC’s permanent paid sick leave

British Columbians are invited to provide input into the development of made-in-BC permanent paid sick leave to support workers and protect workplaces.

In addition to outreach to key stakeholders and Indigenous partners, a public consultation process is now open and can be accessed through government’s engagement site.

There will be two phases of consultation:

  • Phase 1 (August 5 to September 14) – surveys will gather information from employers and workers on the kinds of paid illness and injury leaves currently provided, and how they are meeting workers’ needs; and
  • Phase 2 (September 20 to October 25) – informed by the surveys, options will be prepared for various paid sick leave models, including the numbers of paid days and other supports, and will be posted for public feedback and input.

In May 2021, amendments to the Employment Standards Act laid the groundwork for establishing minimum standards for a permanent paid sick leave entitlement. Following the public engagement process, paid sick leave will be established through a regulation, and come into effect on January 1, 2022.

To participate in the consultation process, click here

For more information on BC’s employment standards, click here.

ABLE BC and the Coalition of BC Businesses (of which ABLE BC is a member) will also be providing a submission on behalf of our membership.

Staffing issues: share your thoughts

We know staffing is a HUGE issue right now. Please help our partners at go2HR with a Labour Market Information Research Project. Participate in the survey today and enter into a draw for prizes valued at $1,500.

go2HR is the human resource and health & safety association for BC’s tourism and hospitality industry. Even before COVID-19, the industry faced significant human resource challenges. We know these challenges will only increase as we emerge from the pandemic.

With funding from the Governments of Canada and British Columbia, go2HR is responding to these challenges by undertaking an ambitious labour market research project.

Click here to take the survey. It takes about 25 minutes to complete and, with your help, will include a representative sample of employers from across BC. The survey will capture data about the impact of COVID-19 on your operations, the human resources issues you’re facing, and what you need in the future.

Participants will be entered into a draw for prizes valued at $1,500. You will also receive monthly email updates on the labour market, and a summary of survey findings.

The survey is being administered by the Qatalyst Research Group. Your answers are strictly confidential and will not be shared with us, except in summary.

For more information, contact Judy Frankel, Communications Manager at go2HR or Jacky Zhang, Manager of Research at Qatalyst.

Click here to take the survey.

BC Hotel Association: Vancouver Island Live Industry Update Series

The BC Hotel Association is hosting a series of live industry updates geared to accommodators across Vancouver Island.

During these free sessions, hear directly from the BCHA team and have the opportunity to share your own perspectives and priorities, as we shift to pandemic recovery.

The sessions will be tailored to each region and include: updates on provincial and federal advocacy efforts, information on emerging issues and ways to mitigate risk, tools and resources available to members, recovery strategies, and more.

TOFINO: register here

  • Tuesday, October 5 from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm
  • Wickanninnish Conference Hall at the Best Western Plus Tin Wis (1119 Pacific Rim Hwy)

COURTENAY: register here

  • Wednesday, October 6, 2021 from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm
  • Ballroom at Crown Isle Resort (399 Clubhouse Drive)

PARKSVILLE: register here

  • Wednesday, October 6 from 2:00 pm to 5:30 pm
  • Grand Moriarty Conference Room at Tigh-Na-Mara Seaside Spa Resort & Conference Centre (1155 Resort Drive)

NANAIMO: register here

  • Thursday, October 7 from 10:00 am to 1:00 pm
  • Opera & Harbour Rooms at Best Western Dorchester (70 Church Street)

Please register by Wednesday, September 29.

ABLE BC Member Feature: The Fox & Hounds Pub

ABLE BC Member The Fox & Hounds Pub was featured in the Fall 2021 issue of the Quarterly PourRead the profile.

When Debbie and Jeff Paul met at 16 years old, it was the start of a loving, life-long relationship with not only each other but with the hospitality and pub industry, too. Debbie’s parents owned hotels, so growing up, she was fully entrenched in hospitality. When Jeff joined the family, he quickly realized that the best way to spend time with Debbie was to work at the hotel. After working their way through high school, the pair were hooked on each other and the industry. 

“We didn’t want to work for Mom and Dad anymore and decided we wanted to sell our house and buy a pub,” says Debbie. “So, we did, and lived in the office upstairs for the first year!” 

In 1993, the pair were offered a suitable price for their pub and they bought the Fox & Hounds Pub in Aldergrove. The rest is history – and what an interesting history it has been!

Read more.

ABLE BC Member Feature: A Day in the Life of Publican Marilyn Sanders

ABLE BC Member and Sundowner Pub owner Marilyn Sanders was featured in theFall 2021 issue of the Quarterly PourRead a day in her life.

Marilyn’s experience in the hospitality industry began back in 1996 when she bought her first pub, the Kennedy’s Pub in North Delta, before selling that and buying the Jolly Coachman in Pitt Meadows with her business partner Dave Crown.

After 10 successful years (2003-2013) they sold the Jolly Coachman and Marilyn retired to enjoy being a grandmother. Marilyn’s retirement was short-lived though as she was lured back two years later, when her friend Russ told her that his sister was selling their pub, The Sundowner, and Marilyn had to buy it.

Read more about Marilyn.

Webinar recording available: Lead generation and marketing tips for reopening

On September 1, ABLE BC and Ballistic Arts hosted a webinar on lead generation and marketing tips for reopening.

Watch the recording and download the presentation slides.

During this one-hour webinar, expert Ted Lau, CEO of award-winning Ballistic Arts, and podcast host of Marketing News Canada, shares:

  • The big changes in Apple, Facebook, and Google that will affect how you market
  • What type of cost effective marketing content makes sense for your lead generation efforts
  • Even more about the Marketing Funnel/Loop and where you need to focus in the reopening

OHS Regulation amendments effective September 1

Amendments to the Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) Regulation came into effect on September 1, 2021. WorkSafeBC has developed resources to help businesses understand the amendments.

Overview of the amendments

The amendments that came into effect on September 1, 2021, affect the following sections:

WorkSafeBC has created and revised a number of OHS guidelines related to the amendments, which you find listed on the OHS Regulation Updates & Decisions page of their website.

More information on the amendments

BC PST Rebate on Select Machinery and Equipment: Second application period opens October 1, 2021

The BC PST Rebate on Select Machinery and Equipment is a temporary provincial sales tax (PST) program to help corporations recover from the financial impacts of COVID-19. 

Under this temporary program, corporations can apply to receive an amount equal to the PST they paid between September 17, 2020 and September 30, 2021 on qualifying machinery and equipment. 

Please note: PST invoiced before the deadline but paid after September 30, 2021 does not qualify for the rebate. Be aware that some businesses may be closed on September 30, 2021 for the new federal statutory holiday, the National Day for Truth and Reconciliation. 

For more information, including eligibility requirements and access to the application, visit gov.bc.ca/corporatePSTrebate. Look for the ‘Apply online’ box at the upper right of the page.

If you have an eTaxBC logon for your PST account:

  • Select the ‘Log on to eTaxBC’ option
  • Once logged in, select your PST account
  • Under ‘I Want To’ select ‘Apply for Select Machinery & Equip Rebate’

 If you don’t have a PST account, or don’t have an eTaxBC logon, select ‘Apply online without a logon’.

LDB Wholesale Update: website now working on Chrome

For businesses that were having issues accessing the LDB Wholesale website using Chrome, we understand the issue has now been fixed.
If you have any other questions or concerns please contact LDB Wholesale.


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